During a close Mercury flyby, the BepiColombo spacecraft collected data that showed how electrons raining down on the planet’s surface are triggering X-ray auroras.
GS III: Science and Technology
Dimensions of the Article:
- BepiColombo Mission: Exploring Mercury
- Objectives of BepiColombo
BepiColombo Mission: Exploring Mercury
BepiColombo is a collaborative mission between the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) to explore Mercury, the closest planet to the Sun.
Named After Giuseppe “Bepi” Colombo:
- The mission is named after Giuseppe “Bepi” Colombo, an Italian mathematician and engineer who made significant contributions to understanding Mercury’s orbit.
Launch and Purpose:
- Launched on October 20, 2018, BepiColombo aims to study various aspects of Mercury, including its surface, composition, magnetic field, and interaction with the solar environment.
Two Main Components:
BepiColombo consists of two main components:
- Mercury Planetary Orbiter (MPO): Provided by ESA, the MPO focuses on mapping and studying Mercury’s surface, composition, and topography.
- Mercury Magnetospheric Orbiter (MMO): Provided by JAXA, the MMO studies Mercury’s magnetic field and magnetosphere.
Objectives of BepiColombo:
- Investigate Mercury’s surface and composition to gain insights into its geological history and formation processes.
- Study Mercury’s magnetic field and magnetosphere to understand its internal structure and interactions with the solar wind.
- Measure Mercury’s exosphere (thin atmosphere) and understand its composition and dynamics.
- Conduct experiments to test principles of general relativity and improve our understanding of gravity.
-Source: Indian Express